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Cast Iron Seared Jumbo Scallops with Organic Orange Jus and Basil Pesto


  • 1Tbsp. cumin seed
  • 1Tbsp. coriander seed
  • 1Tbsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. hot paprika
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1 tsp. brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. kosher salt
  • 12 jumbo scallops
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups blood orange juice or other
  • ½ cup carrot juice
  • ½ cup pesto thin out with water or oil
  • 2 large blood oranges, segmented


  1. In a heavy pan over medium heat dry toast the cumin, coriander, and black peppercorns for about 2 minutes until they become aromatic. Remove from heat and cool. Grind the spices roughly in a spice mill. Stir into this mixture the paprika, mustard, sugar, lemon zest and salt.
  2. Rinse and pat the scallops dry. Roll them in the spice mixture, so that the scallops are completely coated with the mixture. Drizzle with olive oil. Using a very hot cast iron pan, sear the scallops for 2 minutes on each side to caramelize them.
  3. In a small saucepan combine the blood orange juice and the carrot juice. Bring to a simmer and reduce until only ½ cup of juice remains. Remove from heat.
  4. Using a small food processor, pulverize the basil pesto with some water if you like to keep the pesto very green.
  5. Using a large white service plate, spoon a puddle of blood orange juice in the center. Arrange the blood orange segments and scallops on the plate decoratively. To finish, drizzle with pesto oil.

Yield: 4 servings
Source: The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, Napa Valley, California

Cast Iron Seared Jumbo Scallops Label


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